Recent Posts

Why the Shower Pan Can Be a Source of Water Damage

6/1/2020 (Permalink)

Shower drain box grate on a shower base. Shower pan leaks are seen as commonly as bathtub leaks

Anywhere a home has plumbing fixtures and pipes, there is a danger of a leak. Pipes get old and break, fittings loosen and connections fail. With all of its water lines, a bathroom will occasionally become a trouble spot and a bathtub leak is something to keep an eye on. This particular problem can be especially harmful because the escaping water is not always visible right away, allowing water time to rot the wood subfloor and to increase the humidity in the bathroom. In these conditions, mold can become a problem since it grows well in damp, warm conditions. The key is to stop the water leak and thoroughly dry out the area. A local water remediation franchise in East Dundee, IL, can treat the problem, remove mold, and restore water damage.

Addressing a Shower Pan Leak

Shower pan leaks are seen as commonly as bathtub leaks. They can be just as difficult to locate — the water leaks from the bottom of the shower and is not always readily apparent. You should look for the following signs of a water leak around your shower:

  • The growth of mold in the bathroom
  • The presence of water stains around the shower or in the ceiling below
  • Missing grout
  • Cracks in the shower
  • A loose drain

If your shower is old, this area is more likely to spring a leak. In this case, it is a good idea to periodically inspect the area around the shower for moisture.

Addressing Water Damage
In the event of a shower or bathtub leak, you want to limit the level of water damage to your home. The best way to do this is by discovering the leak quickly and taking quick action. A slow, gradual leak has the potential to break down materials that are expensive to fix or replace. Mold growth can also become a concern and could require the services of trained removal technicians. Water leaks should be addressed in a timely manner.

Helpful Information About Smoke Alarms

6/1/2020 (Permalink)

Testing a home smoke alarm Test the smoke alarm at least once a year

If you are like most people, you have bought and installed a smoke alarm in your home in Carpentersville, IL. At the time, you likely read up on the system and had a pretty good understanding of it, but now that some time has passed you could be a bit fuzzy on a few things. This article will serve as a reminder of best practices for your fire alarm. First and foremost, a smoke detector in your home is critical. It cuts the chance of a death occurring in your home by roughly half. Just as importantly, an inoperative alarm is nearly as deadly as having no alarm.

Smoke Alarm Best Practices

Make sure you get the right system for your home. A larger home requires more alarms. Everyone in the home should know what the alarm sounds like and the best way to get out of the house. The following principles should be followed:

  • Test the smoke alarm at least once a year
  • Replace batteries as needed
  • Place a device in every bedroom
  • Replace the fire alarm every ten years
  • Understand how your alarm works

There are two basic types of fire alarms: ionization or photoelectric. A home should have both types to detect different kinds of fires or have alarms that combine both types of detection capabilities. You might also want to consider an integrated alarm system that goes off throughout the entire house when smoke or fire is detected.

Fire Cleanup Best Methods
A professional fire mitigation team has the training and the resources to treat fire damage. Technicians will begin with an inspection and damage assessment and then move on to restore the home to its original condition. They will use high-tech equipment to remove water and chemicals from fire fighting efforts, and they will work to remove soot and smoke damage from the home. Along with a smoke alarm, it is one of the best resources you have to minimize the effects of fire.

Troubleshooting Your Commercial Irrigation System

5/13/2020 (Permalink)

watering lawn with sprinklers An irrigation system is a great way to easily maintain the exterior of your commercial property

Troubleshooting Your Commercial Irrigation System

An irrigation system is a great way to easily maintain the exterior of your commercial property. However, when sprinklers malfunction, they can cause major issues. Broken sprinklers can lead to a buildup of standing water near your East Dundee, IL, building. The water can then enter the basement or seep through the foundation.
There are various signs that your sprinkler system is failing. They include:

  • Gushing water
  • Failing timer
  • Seeping water

If you notice any of these issues, you first need to find the source and location of the irrigation problems. Ideally, you should try to find and address the malfunction quickly before it becomes a larger failure. Below are some sprinkler troubleshooting tips.

Causes of Sprinkler Issues
Some irrigation system problems are easy to diagnose. For instance, gushing water may simply be the result of a broken sprinkler head.
Malfunctioning timers, meanwhile, are likely the result of an electrical issue. Make sure the wires are connected properly. If the wires are corroded, they may need to be repaired or replaced.

Causes of Pipe Problems
Water seeping out of your sprinklers may be evidence of a cracked pipe or split joint. Pipe issues may result from excess traffic outside your facility. As people walk, bike or push strollers, the soil below them compresses due to the extra weight. This can also cause the supply lines to crack.
Tree roots can cause sprinkler pipes to break, as well. The roots can force themselves into the pipe, causing it to leak. Reduced water pressure from your irrigation system may be evidence of this issue.
A broken sprinkler system could cause your customers or clients to complain. You could also end up wasting water throughout your property.
Ideally, you should troubleshoot your sprinklers before they lead to major damage. However, if you do discover excess water within or outside your building, flood cleanup specialists can restore the premises.

Water Damage Cleanup Process

5/1/2020 (Permalink)

Steamed Carpet Cleaning When cleaning up water damage, the first step is to remove the water with a specialized vacuum

Water Damage Cleanup Process

Water damage to your Sleepy Hollow, IL, home can lead to mold growth within 24 hours, so it is important to act quickly to prevent further damage. The following steps outline the cleanup process:

1. Contact your insurance company. They are likely to have specific instructions regarding how to document the damage, recommendations for contractors, and other helpful information. Follow any instructions that they give you to avoid having your claim denied.
2. Remove standing water. When cleaning up water damage, the first step is to remove the water. There are pumps and specialized vacuums available for this purpose. If necessary, you can also use buckets to scoop out the water.
3. Dry out remaining water. After the standing water has been removed, there will still be moisture in porous items. You can use fans and dehumidifiers to help dry them out. If the humidity outside is low enough, you can also open windows and doors to increase the airflow. Some items can be taken outside and left in the sunshine to dry.
4. Clean affected areas. Depending on the source, there may be bacteria lurking in the floodwater. Therefore, it is important to properly sanitize all affected items. The source of the water will determine the type of cleaner you should use. Anything that cannot be fully cleaned and dried should be thrown away to prevent mold growth.
5. Repair and replace damaged items. Some repairs you may be able to do yourself. However, for delicate items, such as electronics and antiques, it may be best to hire a specialist who has the tools and training to restore the item properly.
When your home suffers water damage, mold growth is likely to follow if the water is not removed quickly. However, it is easy to become overwhelmed by the cleanup process, especially if the damage is serious. Fortunately, an experienced restoration company can help you get your home back to normal quickly and safely.

Recovering Items From Soot

4/21/2020 (Permalink)

Soot residue Cleaning up soot residue must be done as quickly as possible

Handling fire loss at your Barrington Hills, IL, property can be challenging. One of the sneakiest obstacles you'll encounter after a fire is soot damage. Here's how to find it and what to do about it.

Where Can Soot Hide?

Soot occurs when organic materials such as metal, plastic, paper, and furniture partially burn. It can hide in a wide variety of places, including the following:

  • Inside the wires and access buttons of electronics and personal devices
  • On clothing and in fabrics, including upholstery and drapery
  • On flat surfaces, such as desktops, countertops, walls, and even the ceiling

Soot is so fine that it can cling to cloth for days, even after it's run through a washing machine. Soot proteins can cling so tight to walls and similar surfaces that you might have to go over the area three or more times before dislodging the soot. In general, soot particles can circulate in the air for months after a fire loss. For these reasons, it's usually safer and more efficient to enlist the help of a professional fire damage mitigation company.

What Valuables Can You Repair or Clean?
A trained fire restoration company may be able to recover a variety of items after soot or smoke damage:

  • Copy machines
  • Postage meters
  • Carpet areas
  • Floor tiles
  • Furniture
  • Windows
  • Lighting fixtures
  • Vacuum cleaners

Technicians can walk you through the restoration process from start to finish using sensors, tools, and techniques to ensure your safety.

What Valuables Should You Replace?
While some staples of your office can be repaired, others most likely cannot. If soot lingers on the following everyday items, be prepared to replace them:

  • Disposable cleaning wipes for hard surfaces, microfiber cloths
  • HEPA filters
  • Bare metal surfaces
  • Deodorizers
  • Safety gloves, glasses, and masks
  • Lighting fixtures
  • Frayed chargers for laptops and devices

Know what to expect after a partial fire loss. Soot can be toxic and tricky to clean. Ultimately, your goals should be to mitigate business interruption, ensure the safety of your employees and recover your valuables as soon as possible.

Maintaining a Building Envelope

4/11/2020 (Permalink)

Construction details - framing installing the roof truss system The envelope is composed of all the barriers between the interior and exterior of the building

Rain damage to your West Dundee, IL, building can lead to serious problems, including black mold. The best way to protect your commercial property is to ensure the building has a sound envelope to keep out rain, wind, and other elements.

Purpose of the Building Envelope

The envelope is composed of all the barriers between the interior and exterior of the building. Major components include the following:

  • Roof
  • Walls
  • Doors
  • Windows
  • Foundation

Seals around doors and windows are also part of the building envelope. The envelope should provide insulation, control light, and noise that enters the building and keep the interior dry. Envelopes that provide good insulation and moisture control are referred to as tight envelopes. Loose envelopes allow more air and moisture to enter the building. Buildings with tight envelopes are less prone to mold growth, rain damage and other problems. They are also more energy-efficient. However, tight envelopes minimize airflow so it is important to maintain proper ventilation.

Maintaining the Envelope

There are several steps you can take to keep your building's envelope in good shape. Make sure there are no flat areas where water can accumulate, as this will put pressure on the envelope and speed deterioration. Perform biannual inspections to check for cracks and other openings as well as joints that have come apart and sealant that has deteriorated. Do additional checks after major storms. Repair any damage as soon as possible. If you notice mold growth, address it quickly to prevent structural damage. When it is necessary to repair or replace parts of the envelope, invest in quality materials and experienced workmanship. Make sure the materials are appropriate for the weather conditions in your area.
Unfortunately, even buildings with tight, well-maintained envelopes can suffer rain damage. If your business suffers water damage or other issues, a certified restoration service can help you get the structure back to normal quickly and safely.

Which Air Purifiers Remove Mold Spores?

3/26/2020 (Permalink)

Air purifier machine in a house Which air purifier removes mold spores?

Mold spores are everywhere in your home in Gilberts, IL. If kept at reasonable levels, they pose no health concern to you and your family. If you’ve had recent flooding in your house, however, chances are those mold counts have skyrocketed. Since mold thrives in a warm, moist environment, water that has pooled is especially susceptible. Even after you have dealt with the mold situation by employing an environmental specialist to remove the offending objects, such as carpeting, drywall, and furniture, high levels of spores can still remain in the air. Purchasing an air filtration system is the only reliable way to bring those counts back to an acceptable range.

What Type of Air Purifier Will Remove Mold?

There are many types of air filtration systems to choose from, but if you want to find one that will truly remove mold spores from the air you need to purchase a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter. Many filters claim to be HEPA filters but they don’t actually meet the HEPA standard, so you need to do your homework before you go out and buy one. A true HEPA filter can remove 99.97% of particles down to a size of 0.3 microns.

Which HEPA Air Filter is Best?

If you are looking for a unit that will cover a small room up to 167 square feet, the Germ Guardian True HEPA Air Purifier meets all of the HEPA requirements. It retails for around $100.
For extra-large rooms (up to 465 square feet), the Honeywell HPA300 True HEPA model is a great option. It runs about $220.
If you need coverage for an area up to 1100 square feet, the Alen BreatheSmart Classic purifier is the way to go. It costs around $590.

Whichever air filtration system you choose, just make sure it meets the HEPA standard so that you get your mold count under control.

3 Flood Safety Tips

3/24/2020 (Permalink)

Main circuit box breaker Shut off the power right away

3 Flood Safety Tips

If your Carpentersville, IL, home has experienced a flood, the first thing on your mind will be how to get the conditions back to normal. Before the cleanup and restoration process begins, however, you should take steps to make sure everything is done safely. Read on to learn some flood safety steps for the cleanup process.

1. Turn Off Electricity

The first thing you should do is turn off all power to the flooded areas. If you can reach your breaker without walking through standing water, shut off power right away. If you can’t reach the breaker without walking through standing water, call an electrician to help you.

2. Remove Water

Mold can pose a flood safety issue, so the next thing to do is to get rid of as much water as possible. Open windows and doors to let the building air out. Use a dehumidifier and fan to speed up the process. Remove any rugs from the area and put them outside to dry.

3. Clean Up

Wear gloves, a face mask, and boots for the cleanup process in order to reduce exposure to chemicals or toxins. Dispose of any damaged items including papers, wall coverings, and carpeting. These items typically don’t last through significant flooding, but hard surfaces and clothes can often be cleaned.

An expert will have more knowledge about the best products to use to reduce the risk of mold or mildew, so it may be wise to contact a remediation expert in your area. In addition to knowledge, experts have access to tools, technology and additional safety tips.

Flooding from a storm is an unfortunate situation for any homeowner, but there are some flood safety steps you can take to move forward quickly. Turning off the power, airing out the area and cleaning up the immediate damage are all important first steps to getting your home back to normal.

We are Cleaning Experts

3/17/2020 (Permalink)

green graphic Call now for your commercial cleaning needs!

SERVPRO is Here to Help during this time of need 

During this unprecedented time caused by the global pandemic of coronavirus, this is a reminder to our customers that we are specialists in cleaning services, and we adhere to the highest cleaning and sanitation standards. 

Specialized Training 

We are prepared to clean and disinfect your home or business, according to protocols set forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. We have years of experience in dealing with biological contaminants, and we will go beyond the scope of work that regular janitorial staff perform on a daily basis. 

The CDC encourages cleaning of high-touch surfaces such as counters, tabletops, doorknobs, light switches, bathroom fixtures, toilets, phones, keyboards, tablets and tables. Other spaces mentioned in the CDC’s guidance for commercial spaces include: 

  • Kitchen/Food Areas 
  • Bathrooms 
  • Schools/Classrooms 
  • Offices 
  • Retail Spaces 
  • Water Fountains 
  • Shelving/Racks 
  • Sales Counters 
  • Carpets and Rugs 
  • Stair Handrails 
  • Elevator Cars 
  • Playground Equipment 
  • Fitness Equipment 

Specialized Products 

The CDC recommends usage of a labeled hospital-grade disinfectant with claims against similar pathogens to the coronavirus. Multiple products in the SERVPRO product line carry the EPA-approved emerging pathogens claims. While there is currently no product tested against this particular strain of the coronavirus, we are following all guidelines as provided by the CDC and local authorities. 

Call Today for a Proactive Cleaning 

If your home or business needs deep cleaning services, call the experts today – SERVPRO of East & West Dundee/SW Barrington Hills- (847) 510-3210.

Key Differences Between Mitigation and Restoration

3/13/2020 (Permalink)

Inside of a commercial facility flooded Flooded commercial building in East Dundee, IL

Anyone who has ever struggled with a disaster in the workplace, such as a flood, understands what a trying time it can be. The immediate emergency requires quick action and response, and your primary concern should be everyone's safety. Rebuilding your office can take time, so it's important that you hire the right flood cleanup company.


Once you've identified the source of the flooding, make sure you stop it and get everyone out of the building safely. A reputable restoration company should arrive on the scene within a few hours of your call. The team will start with the following processes:

  • Determining how the flooding began and ensuring that the water is no longer entering the building.
  • Examining the extent and severity of the damage.
  • Formulating a cleanup plan and sharing it with you.


A professional flood remediation team will first focus on addressing the damage the water caused. Mitigation involves removing all the water from the area and thoroughly drying the floor, walls, ceiling, and furniture. Crews will then use potent chemicals to kills any bacteria and discourage the growth of mold. Technicians can use specialized techniques to clean and dry documents, electronics and other materials in the workplace. The mitigation process can be fast.


Before you can return to your office in East Dundee, IL, the building needs to be in sound condition. Once the cleanup process is over, crews will start to rebuild and store damaged areas such as drywall, carpet and other flooring materials, the roof and other areas of the office. Restoring your building can take weeks or even months, depending on how bad the damage was. During the restoration phase, the flood cleanup company will board up windows and tarp the roof to keep out the elements and to secure the building.
An experienced flood cleanup company has the skills and tactics to help you return to the workplace. You can feel good about the efficient work these teams will do.